Motivation and Emotion

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 106–120 | Cite as

Passion in the romantic sphere: A look at relational outcomes

  • Catherine F. Ratelle
  • Noémie Carbonneau
  • Robert J. Vallerand
  • Geneviève Mageau
Original Paper


Based on the Dualistic Model of Passion (Vallerand et al. in J Pers Soc Psychol 85:756–767, 2003), a bidimensional perspective on romantic passion, that distinguishes between harmonious and obsessive passions, is proposed. The present research aimed at examining how these two types of romantic passion relate to indices of relationship quality, how one’s own passions are associated with one’s partner’s passions and relationship quality, and how the two types of passion relate to relationship stability over time. Study 1 revealed that harmonious passion was more strongly associated with high relationship quality than obsessive passion. Using a dyadic design, Study 2 revealed that the findings of Study 1 applied to both genders. In addition, one’s own passion predicted partner’s relationship quality, partners were not always matched in terms of the predominant type of passion, and passion matching did not predict relationship quality. Finally, Study 3 revealed that types of passion predicted relationship status over a 3-month period.


Romantic passion Couples Love Relationship quality Gender differences 



This research was supported by a doctoral scholarship from FCAR awarded to the first author. We thank Pierre Provencher, Julie Charest, Julie Coiteux, Chantale Bélanger, Chantale Ouellet, Mariane Dupuis, and David Michaliszyn for their valuable assistance in collecting and entering the data.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Catherine F. Ratelle
    • 1
  • Noémie Carbonneau
    • 2
  • Robert J. Vallerand
    • 2
  • Geneviève Mageau
    • 3
  1. 1.Département des Fondements et pratiques en éducation, Pavillon des sciences de l’éducationUniversité LavalQuébecCanada
  2. 2.Département de Psychologie, Laboratoire de Recherche sur le Comportement SocialUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontrealCanada
  3. 3.Département de PsychologieUniversité de MontréalMontrealCanada

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